Stronger – part 3

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God desires for you and me to become stronger. Stronger emotionally, in faith, in love and stronger in the sense that we rest on His sufficient grace.

Stronger, Stronger – part 2

Today, I will continue to talk about how to become stronger, for His Glory and to help fulfill His purposes in our lives.

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Abandon

Lukewarm

Have you ever drank coffee that has been standing for too long and it turns to lukewarm and even undrinkable? Unfortunately, I do that sometimes. I don’t finish that cup! I throw it out and make a fresh cuppa.

When the Bible talks about being Lukewarm, it’s not talking about a temperature of a liquid, but the temperature of your heart. 

If you have been a Christian for a while I assume that you would know what it is like to plateau in your relationship with Jesus. Perhaps through no fault of your own, trials or disappointments, it is easy to lose the passion you once had.

Let me set the scene: Peter has just denied Jesus, and after doing the exact thing he said he would not do, he finds himself back in his boat, fishing. Back to his old way of life and the things he used to do before he knew Jesus. The same happens to us. We also go through phases of full on faith and times when we resort to doubt, and go back to what is known and comfortable to. Plateauing and just cruising in the waters. 

Devastation fills his heart as the waves rock his old and familiar boat. Not only has Jesus died, but the expectation he had in his journey had not turned out like he had planned. 

He had become lukewarm.

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Jesus meets you in your place of need

But we see that Jesus meets him in his place of need. See John 21:4-7:

Early in the morning, Jesus stood on the shore, but the disciples did not realide that it was Jesus.

He called out to them, “Friends, haven’t you any fish?”

“No,” they answered.

He said, “Throw your net on the right side of the boat and you will find some.” When they did, they were unable to haul the net in because of the large number of fish.

Then the disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” As soon as Simon Peter heard him say, “It is the Lord,” he wrapped his outer garment around him (for he had taken it off) and jumped into the water.

Peter had a decision to make. Am I willing to be ‘all in’? 

This decision was not one to be made lightly, for he knew it was going to require everything. In fact, I believe that he knew that if he was going to jump out of the boat, he was going to be leaving the boat for the last time. 

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What is in your boat?

Lay down whats’s in your boat and leave in order to pursue Jesus.

Your identity, career, friends, family, comforts?

Just like Peter we need to:

1. Choose – The power of free will to choose whether we will pursue Jesus and leave the boat.

2. Abandon – To what degree are we willing to lay everything down to follow Him? What do we need to abandon?

3. Remember– We leave these things behind because we remember who we are and the plans that he has for our lives. Where do you need to remind yourself of who you really are?

When you build your kingdom your future is only going to be as big as the boat.

But when you build God’s kingdom your future is as big as the Ocean.

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Posted by Stephen Baragwanath

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